I’ve been reading a lot of shoujo manga lately and it made me realise there’s one particular reason manga works so well.
A good manga is one that you can devour volumes of quickly and then ask for more of, right?
As I’ve been reading one volume of manga after another, I came to the realisation that it’s because of this easy consumption that is one reason as to why it makes such an appealing medium. Unlike anime, which begs for your full immersion for the duration of an episode, manga allows you to move at your own pace and immersion level…and yet you end up losing track of time once you start reading.
It’s most evident with shonen fighting manga, where the flow of the action makes them breezy reads, but even for manga with some slice of life elements, such as Hana-Kimi or even Kamikaze Kaitou Jeanne, sentences are often short and choppy, to make things extra readable. Then again, real life dialogue isn’t entirely full of long sentences, is it?
Somewhere along the way, I ended up calling this quality of manga “easily burnable” because it’s like a fire consuming paper – it’s devoured much more quickly than you expect it to, but you knew it was going to get all burnt up anyway.
I guess a problem with how it’s consumed (but also a factor as to manga’s addictiveness) is its often serial nature. Aside from the more episodic series, it’s hard to jump from one point in the plot to another without understanding what came before it.
Another problem is that not a lot of the series have proper endings, because once a series ends, you sometimes encounter the problem of a sequel series just to keep the popularity of the series up (and to milk the associated cash cow). I’ve found shoujo manga series tend to run shorter than the other types of demographics in manga and thus have higher chances of having a proper ending, but when it comes to their anime, they can sometimes run for really long by having filler that can cleverly pass for being part of the canon or entire filler arcs (see Sailor Moon for examples of both of those, for instance).
You can tell I didn’t put a lot of effort into this piece, huh? I don’t expect it to get many views. Between summer premieres, doing the usual posts, the Space is the Place tour and running out of weekly posts, I’ve got my work cut out on the blogging front. Notably, this doesn’t have a lot of overlap with the Why I Read Manga post because the way I approached the subject is different.
So did I miss out on any of the main appeals of manga?